A few years ago John Solomon walked away from music. After a long struggle with addiction and a brief stint in jail he broke up his critically acclaimed band Friends Like These and moved to a small town in Wisconsin. And supposedly that was that.
Even though Solomon left music, music never left him. After a long hiatus, he called some friends to come to Wisconsin and demo up a new album….the results are the brilliant Communist Daughter.
Five words to describe your music:
“Everyone knows how to struggle.”
One book you’d recommend to an alien:
City of God, by EL Doctorow. Its about love, its about faith, its about war all wrapped up in a tangential way… That pretty much sums up being human.
Five bands (or albums) that have most influenced you?
I don’t think I would say that I have the 5 most influential, there are a lot of influences out there and here are 5 I was thinking of tonight. Johnny Hermanson (of Alva Star and Storyhill) taught me how to write a song, The Beach Boys taught me to love harmony while still being alone, sad songs with full hearts, Johnny Cash was honest and he struggled and he was relevant and an important artist all the way through his life, Sam Cooke made me want to play live music, Neutral Milk Hotel made me want to quit live music.
One moment in time you’d like to have witnessed:
I don’t really want to go back in time.
Five people you’d love to share a stage-jam with:
I just don’t jam. I would love to hang out with people back stage. I just can’t jam, its not for me. If I tell you the 5 people then I would feel really sheepish if I ever got to hang out with them. I am not star struck often but there are some musicians I really respect.
One biggest regret in your career (to date):
Besides wasting years and a great band on drugs and mental breakdowns I could have gotten treated for? I guess I regret that I couldnt see life unless it was right in front of my face. I wish I would have slowed down and ran this as a marathon and not a sprint. I regret not being sober and learning how to do this whole musician thing earlier. I regret a lot of things. I dont think people who say “no regrets” are being very honest. And if they are then they are probably assholes. I wish I would have done a lot of things better, but at least it seems to be working out for me now. I hope I don’t regret saying that.
Five things on your perfect rider:
Privacy. After that the other 4 things dont really matter much.
If I had my way I would walk off the bus straight on to stage, play a show, thank everyone and go home immediately.
One hour to live – who would you spend it with, and why?
Home, with Molly. Family, thats pretty easy.
You can buy the Lions & Lambs EP and other Communist Daughter releases from Grain Belt Records here.
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